Jane Varley library author talk:
Varley introduces her poetry chapbook, "Sketches at the Naesti Bar"
Published: Friday, March 1, 2013
Updated: Friday, March 1, 2013 14:03
On Feb. 22, Associate Professor of English Jane Varley was featured in a library author talk.
Varley talked about and read from her chapbook, Sketches at the Naesti Bar, and talked about her trips to Iceland.
She brought pictures to help the audience imagine what she was talking about.
Varley started seriously writing when she was in the end of her senior year in college.
Varley describes poetry as “an underappreciated art form.” She thinks poetry, and any form of art, helps people to live a happy life.
Varley explained that writing can be a challenge, especially if the writer wants their work printed and sold.
“Poetry is a very lonely business,” said Varley. “I mean you spend a lot of time writing and a lot of time revising and because poems are so short it can make it feel like you’re writing a big book. So to write a short book and to actually get it into print and see it in people’s hands is a wonderful sense of achievement.”
Varley’s Sketches at the Naesti Bar resulted from time spent in Iceland.
“My book was inspired by several trips to the country of Iceland, where I was able to travel the countryside [and] I was able to learn some things about the language, learn a lot about the history of the country and basically just hang out in a way,” said Varley. “That made a lot of mental and emotional space for poetry because poetry needs that.”
Varley’s work on the chapbook took longer than most would anticipate with poetry.
“It took, I would say, close to three years, and I was finalizing details down to the very last minute before publishing,” said Varley. “Back to poetry being short, you probably wouldn’t have guessed it would take so long to write such a short work. But it certainly does when every word is supposed to mean something. Every single word is supposed to mean something.”
Varley’s experience as a writer has helped her to learn a lot that she can incorporate in her courses and share with others.
“I think you should laugh and sweat meaning,” said Varley. “Get some experience every day.”